Magazine article American Forests

A Fierce Green Fire; the American Environmental Movement

Magazine article American Forests

A Fierce Green Fire; the American Environmental Movement

Article excerpt

A Fierce Green Fire; The American Environmental Movement by Phillip Shabecoff. $18. Island Press, 2003.

This is a timely revision of Shabecoff's 1992 definitive history of the American conservation and environmental movements, which brings the story up to the present with an ominous view of where the nation is headed: "As this is being written, the trend toward a rapidly deteriorating environment is not being altered but accelerated."

Lest you interpret this dire conclusion as the hubris of an environmental activist, you need only to review the record of this accomplished New York Times reporter of 30 years. This is a solidly researched book by a veteran journalist able to discover the drama of history as well as the facts. It is the story behind the American environmental movement and an affirmation that trend need not be destiny.

The first three chapters trace the dramatic transformation of the nation's natural environment and the earliest stirrings of concern, which became the roots of the conservation movement. …

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